We are not completely grumpy men. But, in the grand tradition of miserable Christmas soap opera episodes, we felt it would be a fun thing to do to list some absolutely dark and down fiction this festive season. So, we came up with a preliminary list of worryingly bleak books, some genre, some not. But all still good reading.
The Scalding Rooms, by Conrad Williams. (Dark, dark fantasy.)
Viriconium, by M John Harrison. (Fantasy, and a kind of bleak poetry.)
Nineteen Seventy Four, by David Peace. (Crime—and simply one of the most grim and well written books around, set in the grimmest of northern English regions in Winter.)
Nineteen Eighty Four, by George Orwell. (SF.)
Memories of Ice, by Steven Erikson. (Fantasy. And for the body count.)
Perdido Street Station, by China Miéville. (Fantasy/SF, but in a bleak and oppressive world.)
We're too happy at the moment, so throw some suggestions our way. What are some of the bleakest books you've read?